When was the last time you left the house without your phone? What’s the longest you have gone without looking to see who had texted you or checking your email? If you are like most of us, you answered “Once, by accident” and “an hour or two tops”. We live in a world of instant connections and updates, which is great for sharing a selfie or a wonderful lunch photo, but it can be stressful for brides and grooms who want to keep their ceremony and reception more intimate (and their designs private before the big reveal to guests).
So, how does a bride find balance between honoring the rights of her guests to have a good time, check their Instagram and snap a great shot of her walking down the aisle with the desire to have a more intimate or traditional affair? The answer is simple; you share your desires with your loved ones in a gracious and respectful way and hope they will be gracious and respectful enough to abide by your request (notice I did not say demand).
I recently read an article that suggested people are more likely to agree to a request if you use the word “because” after stating you’re desire. The point? Don’t just dictate an order. Explain why you’re asking and make it fun. Here are a few ideas:
Place a Fun Note On A Sign Or On a Card In The Program: Something like, “Cell phones are welcome guests, but we ask they stay silent and in the laps of their owners during the ceremony.”
Make It A Game: Tell everyone to please keep their phones off during the ceremony and wait for a specific “key” word upon which everyone will be expected to “snap a funny selfie” and upload it with a specific hashtag. This will be the moment of transition in which people can start using their phones.
Set-Up A Charging Station: Tell guests you will be sharing photos from the photographer and to charge up their phones during the ceremony so they are ready to go for the rest of the night.
Ask Your Planner, Vendors and Close Family Members/Friends To Support You: They can be the ones to gently remind other guests of your request.
In the end, you’re not there to babysit your guests but to enjoy them and what’s the worst thing that could happen? There’s photographic evidence of what I hope is one of the most wonderful days of your lives.
What’s your best tip for brides looking to limit cellphone use on their big day?